Years ago 'Dude Ranches' and stables were popular around the lake. At one time there were at least 4 of these dude ranches at one time that offered horse rides and horse boarding. Last night we went to hear Mike give a talk on 'Horsing around Conneaut Lake' for the Historical Society. Mike, or Mikie, is my mother-in-law's first cousin. She fell in love with horses as a child when her Uncle Larry (Bob's grandfather) introduced her to horses. She, Larrie Lois (my mother-in-law) and Mazie (Larrie Lois's sister) always had horses and Mike and Larrie would spend hours with their horses each day. Bob's grandfather even bought a farm to have a place to keep the horses. (The Bark Park is on the site of the old barn). Mike eventually went on to raise and show Morgan horses.
Larrie Lois, Mike and Mazie are the three girls on the left of this flyer. The hotels even offered moonlight rides to their guests.
A hitching post was set up by the hotel. Larrie and Mike would ride their horses down Midway Dr. and tie them to the posts. In the spring, before the hotel opened up, they would ride their horses into the lake at Midway Beach so they could wash the winter coats (and grime) off of their horses.
That's our white cottage in this picture! The hitching post is long gone.
Mike asked me to sit with her to hand her pictures and keep her organized during the talk. Despite all of her pre-talk jitters, she did a fabulous job.
Because of the high cost of liability insurance, there are no longer any stables with horses to rent in the area. We're so fortunate that Mike lets us go to Snails Pace Acres (her farm) whenever we want.